Google+ Reading Teen: More Books for the Boys

Thursday, February 18, 2010

More Books for the Boys

Thanks to Amy's son, Austin (12), we have a BUNCH of great books for young teen guys.  He has helped us add 8 books to the "Guys, you might like these" page.  Here are some of the newest books.

The Dangerous Books for Boys by Gonn and Hal Iggulden
Intended audience: 8 to 108  
Equal parts droll and gorgeous nostalgia book and heartfelt plea for a renewed sense of adventure in the lives of boys and men, Conn and Hal Iggulden's The Dangerous Book for Boys became a mammoth bestseller in the United Kingdom in 2006. Adapted, in moderation, for American customs in this edition (cricket is gone, rugby remains; conkers are out, Navajo Code Talkers in), The Dangerous Book is a guide book for dads as well as their sons, as a reminder of lore and technique that have not yet been completely lost to the digital age. Recall the adventures of Scott of the Antarctic and the Battle of the Somme, relearn how to palm a coin, tan a skin, and, most charmingly, wrap a package in brown paper and string. The book's ambitions are both modest and winningly optimistic: you get the sense that by learning how to place a splint or write in invisible ink, a boy might be prepared for anything, even girls (which warrant a small but wise chapter of their own).

Austin's Review:  "This is a book of ideas! Every fact and plan described in this book has an idea in its root. Always look for the idea behind the plan; because ideas are the most fun part of life."

 - Terry Reale, one of the coolest grandfathers of all time.  Rating: 9 out of 10For full content review, click here.

The Door Within by Wayne Thomas Batson
Intended Audience: 12 - 15
Age of Main Character: 14

When his family moves to Colorado to care for his ailing grandfather, Aidan thinks his life is ruined until he discovers three ancient scrolls in the man's basement. They tell of a world where the knights of Alleble fight to keep the warriors of Paragory from gaining dominion over the Realm. When Aidan reads the last line of the scrolls, Believe and enter, he is swept into this strange land. His role there is to become the 12th knight of the King's Elder Guard. Their mission is to travel to the kingdom of Mithegard and convince its sovereign not to sign a treaty with Paragory. Aidan discovers that the people in the Realm, called Glimpses, have doubles that exist in his world. A map of the Realm is provided, as is a character guide with pronunciation key. The concept in this first of a projected trilogy is intriguing and the plot moves along at a steady pace. Some characters lack development, but several of them are engaging, especially the swordmaiden Gwenne and an underground serpentine creature named Falon.

Austin's Review: This was a great book from a Christian author. Awesome story, great imagination, it was a fun read.  Rating:  7 out of 10.  For full content review, click here.

Guys Write for Guys Read by Jon Scieszka
Age intended: 12 and up   
Age of main Character: varies
Scieszka has put together a diverse and fast-paced anthology of scribblings and stories that deserves a permanent place in any collection serving middle graders. The book features brief contributions from scores of heavyweight authors and illustrators like Walter Dean Myers, Dan Gutman, Chris Crutcher, Avi, Brian Jacques, Dav Pilkey, Stephen King, Daniel Pinkwater, Jerry Spinelli, Will Hobbs, Chris Van Allsburg, Laurence Yep, and frequent collaborator Lane Smith. If there's one overarching theme here, it's the simple but important message: "read what you like, when you like, whatever that happens to be." Several other themes reappear in multiple selections. Among them are the importance of fathers, what it is to become a "real" man, how childhood reading predicted and shaped an author's future, adventures and misadventures in sports, why it's okay to be a "guy's guy," and, conversely, never being a "guy's guy" and finding out that that's okay, too. Boys who are constantly doodling–even when they're not supposed to–will be particularly inspired by contributions from successful illustrators like Tony DiTerlizzi, Timothy Basil Ering, and Brett Helquist, who've dug up their old, shaky drawings from parents' attics to show boys just what they were creating when they were kids. While the anthology arguably contains not one single masterpiece, there's something undeniably grand about this collective celebration of the intellectual life of the common boy.

Austin's Review: This was a truly great book. Great Authors. Great Writing. Great.This book was funny, clever, educational, and just a clever guy book. Next to the Dangerous Book for Boys, this is my favorite book that is just for guys, about guys, and tells you how to be a better guy.  Rating:  7.5 out of 10.  For full content review, click here.

Thanks Austin!  Keep up the great work!

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